American heiress Peggy Guggenheim was an avid art collector who lived in Venice for three decades. The unique 18th century palace she called home is instantly recognizable on the Grand Canal for its low and understated stone façade amongst so many towering lace-like mansions on every side. Though minimalist from the outside, today the palazzo has been converted into one of Italy’s most famous modern art museums. Stroll through the heiress’s old dining room, study and salons to admire work that spans from cubism to abstract expressionism.
If you’ve been to Venice, you’ll know the city is pretty much a work of art in itself, full of winding streets and marble and statues. But you’ll also know about its fantastic art scene, born out of its past as a wealthy trade centre from medieval times through the Renaissance. Basically, this city is an art lover’s heaven. Got that?
For one thing, once every two years, Venice’s La Serenissima becomes La Biennale, one of the longest-running and most prestigious art festivals in the world. If you can make it down for that, do it. But all times of year, Venice’s museums and galleries are alive with culture and vibes, and you’ll find contemporary art alongside historic palaces. The best part? On the first Sunday of each month, over 450 of them are free to visit. Read on for our guide to the very best museums in the Floating City.
Planning your next trip? Check out our latest travel guides, written by local experts.